This story has received new life recently after the Pentagon bought and destroyed 10,000 copies of a book, "Operation Dark Heart," written by Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer, prompting an editorial published at Investors Business Daily to ask:
"Why would the Pentagon buy and destroy copies of a book by a former Army intelligence officer? Could it be perhaps because it contained information on how the 9/11 attacks might have been prevented?"
Of course the Screw Loose Change blog wouldn't want Loose Change to be right about anything, so they recently posted a blog attempting to debunk the issue.
James B. of the blog asserted that:
...The whole point of the project was that it was supposed to be a data mining project of open sources. So all the troofers have to do to prove this story true is point out where Atta showed up in the press prior to 9/11 and how this somehow connected him to a terrorist cell.But the project did not rely on open sources alone, as the article on the subject on Wikipedia states:
The program used data mining techniques to associate open source information with classified information in an attempt to make associations between individual members of terrorist groups as part of its original "intelligence preparation of the battlespace". The objective of this particular project was to ascertain whether the data mining techniques and open source material were effective tools in determining terrorist activities...A recent article by Jon Gold also makes this clear, he writes:
If you don't know, Able Danger was a military unit set up by the US Special Operations Command (SOCOM) in late 1998. It was tasked with collecting "huge amounts of data in a technique called "data mining." They get information from such sources as al-Qaeda Internet chat rooms, news accounts, web sites, and financial records. Using sophisticated software, they compare this with government records such as visa applications by foreign tourists, to find any correlations and depict these visually." The information would then be used to "conduct real operations against al-Qaeda targets."The following excerpt from the Fox News article "Third Source Backs 'Able Danger' Claims About Atta" makes it clear that Atta was not identified by open source material alone:
J.D. Smith, a defense contractor who claims he worked on the technical side of the unit, code-named "Able Danger"... said data was gathered from a variety of sources, including about 30 or 40 individuals. He said they all had strong Middle Eastern connections and were paid for their information. Smith said Able Danger's photo of Atta was obtained from overseas.The Wikipedia article states the following of the other witnesses who support the claims about Atta:
"I am absolutely positive that he [Atta] was on our chart among other pictures and ties that we were doing mainly based upon [terror] cells in New York City," Smith said.
The Defense Department announced its findings on September 1, 2005, after a three-week investigation into Able Danger. The statement announced the discovery of three other witnesses in addition to Shaffer and Phillpott who confirm Able Danger had produced a chart that "either mentioned Atta by name as an al-Qaeda operative [and/or] showed his photograph." Four of the five witnesses remember the photo on the chart. The fifth remembers only Atta being cited by name. The Pentagon describes the witnesses as "credible" but stated that the document which allegedly mentioned Atta could not be found.
In debunker land all of these witnesses are just confused, or lying like former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds.
I endorse the NYC CAN campaign and support the need for a new, independent, investigation of the events and failures that lead up to the 9/11 attacks.
The original 9/11 Commission inquiry became an exercise in bureaucratic ass-covering and obfuscation of accountability.
I had no intention of joining the ranks of “whistle blowers”. In 2003, when I made my disclosure to the 9/11 commission regarding the existence of a pre 9/11 offensive counter-terrorism operation that had discovered several of the 9/11 terrorists a full year before the 9/11 attacks my intention was to simply tell the truth, and fulfill my oath of office.
Unfortunately, this was a minority view.
Instead of supporting the search for the truth, members of the Bush/Rumsfeld Department of Defense did everything within their power to destroy my 20 year career as a clandestine intelligence operative simply to try to discredit me and my disclosure.
In 2006 I testified before Congress on the pre-9/11 issues regarding the systemic failures I was personally aware of – in both open and closed sessions – and yet nothing was ever done to correct these problems.
The families and victims of the 9/11 attacks are owed a real accounting of why their government failed them. We all deserve answers.
The full accounting has never been made. This accounting is long overdue. I hope the NYC CAN effort will result in a real, detailed, independent investigation that will reveal the full truth – whatever that truth may be.
The 9/11 Truth Movement has no credentialed experts...
Witnesses in Defense Dept. Report Suggest Cover-Up of 9/11 Findings
Able Danger Round-up